I haven’t written in a while.  I’ve begun a number of posts, but they’ve all felt so forced.  The truth is, this move back to my beloved sunshine state has absolutely knocked the wind out of my sails.  I’m a little stunned with emotions these days.

But today I am confronted with something that is much larger than my own little confusions.  Today I cried in the parking lot of church.  Ugly lines of brown mascara ran down my cheeks as I buckled my little ones into their car seats.  Allot of people cried at my church today.  Because we don’t know how to say goodbye to a woman we love.

About eight years ago, I confessed to a group of women in a Bible study that I had been hiding a debilitating case of depression and suicidal thoughts.  That was the day I saw the second miracle of my life.  That day, those women, whose children were all grown and out on their own, gathered around me like a mother bird gathers her precious ones.  They laid gentle hands on my shoulders, and they prayed for my healing.  That day I was healed.  Fully.  It was a miracle.

The miracle of confession and comfort.

Admittance of weakness and then a gathering of belief.

Among those women, was a sweet lady with lovely eyes and a ready smile.  She, herself, was living with daily pain from fibromyalgia and yet, without reserve, she joined in prayer for me.  She might not remember that day, but, as I greave her, I remember it well.  She is in need of a miracle now, and I long to lay myself at her feet and beg God for it. She once told me that I will be like Queen Esther, to use my gifts to bridge a way for people toward God.  I have seen her words come true in my life, and I am sick with grief that I have not been able to tell her how many times I have thought of and treasured her words.

The Bearded Wonder is on his way to her bedside now.  He raced home to grab his mandolin to play to her at the request of her family.  The mandolin is in poor shape so he grabbed his Irish buzuki, which sounds like a mandolin but has a richer sound.  I hope that, as he plays for her, she feels the love we all have for her on every single note that floats in the air about her.  I hope she knows that she is loved more than she can imagine.  I hope she remembers that her work here on earth, though filled with suffering, was good and pleasing to her Abba.  And I hope she knows what she did for me all those years ago.

My eyes are too full of tears to keep writing.

Please, pray for this dear, wonderful woman and her family.

Please, tell someone who loved on you how much they mean to you.

Please, do hard things.